The state of Education & Mentorship in Nevada

  • Tue, October 08, 2019
  • 11:45 AM - 1:30 PM
  • The Las Vegas Country Club, 3000 Joe W Brown Dr, Las Vegas, NV 89109, USA


  • Member registration for NV IWF Las Vegas Luncheon - Dr. Jesus F. Jara & Jan Jones
  • Guest Registration for NV IWF October Luncheon - Dr. Jesus Jara and Jan Jones Blackhurst

Registration is closed

Investing in the Future of our Community

Moving from Venezuela to Miami as an English-Language learner, gave Dr. Jesus Jara a unique perspective towards education. His teachers invested in him as a child, and so Dr. Jara has set a priority of ensuring equity and access for our historically under-served and under-resourced students.

Please join us in welcoming Dr. Jesus Jara, Superintendent of the Clark County School District, who will share his vision on how and what he is doing to help make the Clark County School District (CCSD) the #1 choice for students and their families. 

The Million Women Mentors initiative is designed to help companies, schools, organizations, and others think intentionally about mentoring and efforts to increase the number of girls and women in and staying in STEM.

Research shows that individuals with mentors have improved academic, social, and economic prospects. For women in STEM fields, this becomes increasingly important as young women look to role models to help them gain their confidence and increase their opportunities, particularly in science, technology, engineering, and math fields where women remain grossly underrepresented. 

Immediately following Dr. Jara, we are thrilled that NV IWF member, Jan Jones Blackhurst, who is one of the leaders on the Nevada Million Women Mentors Steering Committee, will be bringing us all up to date about the status and potential of this exciting initiative!   

Dr. Jesus Jara
Clark County School District

 Jan Jones Blackhurst
Board Member
Caesars Entertainment

 The State of Education in Southern Nevada

 The Nevada Million Women Mentors Initiative

 "Our kids only have one shot at school. So we must establish a focus on instructional excellence to deliver on strong teaching and learning."

"...it is imperative that we foster the career development of young women in Nevada and across the nation, especially in STEM fields."

In his first 90 days on the job, Dr. Jara completed a listening tour including thousands of parents, employees, students and community members. The result is Focus: 2024, CCSD’s ambitious five-year strategic plan approved by the Board of School Trustees.

In his first year on the job, Dr. Jara also lead an effort to resolve employee contracts with all five of the district’s employee bargaining groups - a historic first for CCSD.

During the 2019 legislative session, Dr. Jara and his team successfully helped advocate for the first modernization of the education funding formula since 1967, changing the education landscape for a generation of Nevada students. They also secured more funding than had been allocated for schools in years, including an average 5 percent raise for all CCSD employees in the 2019-20 school year.

Jara’s first year on the job focused heavily on equity and access, initiating plans to expand access to Advanced Placement classes at all schools. CCSD has one of the highest transiency rates in the nation, and Dr. Jara’s team chose a standard K-9 assessment plan to ensure the district is consistently tracking student success, including for students who move frequently.

Dr. Jara also advocated for various school safety improvements, including putting more officers on campuses and developing one of the nation’s largest K-9 officer teams dedicated to sniffing out firearms.

Dr. Jara brings with him more than 20 years of experience serving public school students, including serving as the deputy superintendent for Orange County Public Schools in Florida, the superintendent and chief operations officer in Monroe County Public Schools (Florida), as executive director of the College Board’s Florida Partnership, and as an assistant principal and principal in Springfield, Mass, He began his career in Miami-Dade County Public Schools, where he was a bilingual biology teacher and coach.

He received his Doctorate in Education, Educational Policy, Leadership, and Administration from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst. Dr. Jara is married and has three children who thrived in public schools.

Jan Jones Blackhurst is a long-time political and business leader who has left an indelible imprint on the lives of millions of people. In 1991, Jan broke the glass ceiling as Las Vegas’ first female mayor. Under Jan’s leadership the city experienced tremendous growth, making her one of the Las Vegas’ most popular mayors to date. She then joined Caesars Entertainment, where she grew the industry’s first Responsible Gaming practices to include an ambassador model for the gaming industry and the first industry code of commitment. Jan is also known and respected for her efforts to create a diverse and inclusive workplace, advancing environmental stewardship, advocating for important social issues and giving millions of dollars to individuals, families, and communities in need.

Through Jan’s guidance, Caesars Entertainment has earned a 100 percent perfect score in the Human Rights Campaign Corporate Equality Index for ten consecutive years. Jan has channeled her passion for charitable causes through her role as Chair of the Caesars Foundation, which strengthens communities through philanthropic activities and corporate gifts totaling $66 million since 2013. Jan participates extensively in university speaking engagements and lecture series throughout the country and has also helped establish the International Gaming Institution Center of Excellence at the University of Nevada – Las Vegas.

Before joining Caesars in 1999, Jan served two terms as Mayor of Las Vegas. She was the city’s first female chief executive and one of its most popular mayors, having been re-elected in 1995 by a 72 percent margin. While in office, Jan presided over an unprecedented period of economic, social and cultural expansion. She spearheaded a massive and redevelopment effort in the city’s once-neglected downtown neighborhood and was among the first mayors in the country to advocate for LGBT rights and issues as early as 1991.

Jan serves on the Board of Directors for the U. S. Chamber of Commerce, and the Global Fairness Initiative. Additionally, she serves on several boards as chairwoman including the Nevada Resort Association, Las Vegas Stadium Authority, and is also a member of the Women's Leadership Board at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. She has received many recognitions and accolades including the Americanism Award from the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), the Woman of Diversity Award for "100 Years of Influence - Women Shaping the First 100 Years of Las Vegas", Outstanding Service in a Land-based Industry from Totally Gaming, PR News CSR Professional of the Year and was named by the Las Vegas Business Press as one of its “Women Who Mean Business.” Jan has been honored by the American Diabetes Association and the "I Have a Dream" Foundation, and named Humanitarian of the Year in 1998 by the Muscular Dystrophy Association. In 2014, she was one of the first women to be inducted into the American Gaming Association (AGA) Gaming Hall of Fame. More recently, she has earned the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Latin Chamber of Commerce, the Dom Pérignon Award of Excellence from UNLVino, the Diversity Hero Award from PR Week and was honored by ACLU for Community Equality.

Jan Jones Blackhurst holds a bachelor's degree in English from Stanford University and attended the University of Southern California's School of Food Marketing Management.


Questions? Contact us at nviwf.gm@gmail.com

702-857-8754  P.O. Box 231412  Las Vegas, NV 89123

Nevada IWF is a 501(c)6 non-profit organization. 

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